Stenamma foveolocephalum

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Stenamma foveolocephalum
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Stenammini
Genus: Stenamma
Species: S. foveolocephalum
Binomial name
Stenamma foveolocephalum
Smith, M.R., 1930

Stenamma foveolocephalum casent0104515 profile 1.jpg

Stenamma foveolocephalum casent0104515 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels


The type specimens and types of the synonym Stenamma carolinense were found in sparsely vegetated sandy soil. Nests found in Florida were in similar situations and had nest entrance holes that resembled fire ant foraging entrances. A small pile of sand granules were arranged discontinuously in a roughly circle shape around the entrance hole. Nests appeared to consist of small chambers located within 15 cm of the ground surface. Across their range specimens have been collected in sand scrub, open areas in pine scrub, power line cuts and along roadside berms. This species is suspected of foraging above ground in the winter months. It has been found in a number of southern states but in just a few localities. DuBios and Davis speculated this species prefers disturbed habitat due to its openness. Such sites may aid the winter foraging habitats of Stenamma foveolocephalum by allowing more direct heating of the ground surface. (Smith 1930, DuBois and Davis 1998)


From Stenamma brevicorne and its various forms Stenamma foveolocephalum differ in the following particulars: (1) larger eyes (which have 6-7 large ommatidia in their greatest diameter); (2) the reticulate-foveolate sculpturing of the head; (3) the transverse rugulae on the basal surface of the epinotum;, (4) the longer and somewhat subcampanulate shaped postpetiole; (5) the deeper body coloration; and (6) by the more highly glabrous surface of the head and thorax. (Smith 1930)


USA. Known from Mississippi, Alabama, Florida and North Carolina.

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Nearctic Region: United States (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb



The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's Online Catalogue of the Ants of the World.

  • foveolocephalum. Stenamma fovolocephala Smith, M.R. 1930b: 564 (w.) U.S.A. Spelling emended to foveolocephalum and senior synonym of carolinense: DuBois & Davis, 1998: 132.
  • carolinense. Stenamma carolinense Smith, M.R. 1951b: 156, figs. 1, 2 (w.) U.S.A. Junior synonym of foveolocephalum: DuBois & Davis, 1998: 132.

Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.



Smith (1957) - Length 3.6-3.9 mm. Eye subelliptical, rather large for a Stenamma, with its greatest diameter approximately 0.15 mm and composed of seven or eight ommatidia. Second to sixth funicular segments as long as broad or longer than broad; the last funicular segment not as long as the combined lengths of the three preceding segments. Thorax, in profile, with the promesonotum more convex in the anterior than the posterior half. Mesoepinotal impression pronounced, approximately twice as long as deep. Base of epinotum sloping posteriorly to meet the declivity and forming two distinct tuberculate but acutely pointed spines which are about 0.16-0.2 the length of the base of the epinotum. Petiolar node, from above and behind, subconical, with weakly emarginate superior border. Postpetiole, from above, subcampanulate, approximately as broad as long but with the appearance of being longer than broad. Base of gaster with short, (0.10 mm or less) but in some lights, distinct longitudinal rugulae.

Mandibles rugulose-punctate, the punctures large, coarse and scattered. Cheeks with coarse longitudinal rugulae. Front with posteriorly divergent, longitudinal striae. Much of the dorsal surface of the head coarsely reticulate-punctate. Dorsum of the thorax, especially the promesonotum, rather coarsely and transversely rugulose-reticulate. Sides of thorax with coarse, longitudinal rugulae. Petiolar and postpetiolar nodes rather coarsely rugulose-reticulate. Frontal area, epinotal declivity and gaster smooth. The body and appendages shining in most lights.

Hairs moderately abundant, light yellowish or grayish, suberect to erect.

Body, exclusive of the gaster, dark reddish brown. Vertex of head infuscated. Gaster brownish except at the base and apex. Appendages lighter than the remainder of the body.

Type Material

Smith (1957) - One cotype worker in the U. S. National Museum which I hereby designate as the lectotype. A second cotype worker in the collection of the Department of Entomology of the Mississippi State College has apparently been lost. Southern slope of a thinly wooded hillside, two miles south of Ackerman,Mississippi. Described from two workers collected from sandy soil by M.R. Smith.


Morphological. Presumed to be a reference to the reticulate-foveolate sculpturing of the head.


  • DuBois, M. B. ; Davis, L.R. 1998. Stenamma foveolocephalum (=S. carolinense) rediscovered (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae). Sociobiology 32: 125-138 (page 132, Spelling emended to fovolocephalum and senior synonym of carolinense)
  • Smith, M. R. 1930d. Description of three new North American ants, with biological notes. Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 23: 564-568 (page 564, worker described)
  • Smith, M. R. 1957b. Revision of the genus Stenamma Westwood in America north of Mexico (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Am. Midl. Nat. 57: 133-174.

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Deyrup, M. 2003. An updated list of Florida ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Florida Entomologist 86(1):43-48.
  • Forster J.A. 2005. The Ants (hymenoptera: Formicidae) of Alabama. Master of Science, Auburn University. 242 pages.
  • MacGown J. A., J. G. Hill, L. C. Majure, and J. L. Seltzer. 2008. Rediscovery of Pogonomyrmex badius(Latreille) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Mainland Mississippi, with an Analysis of Associated Seeds and Vegetation. Midsouth Entomologist 1: 17-28.
  • MacGown, J.A and J.A. Forster. 2005. A preliminary list of the ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of Alabama, U.S.A. Entomological News 116(2):61-74
  • Pierce A. D., and D. L. Wood. 2019. State Record for Stenamma foveolocephalum (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Missouri. The Great Lakes Entomologist 51(3-4): 54-55.
  • Smith M. R. 1951. A new species of Stenamma from North Carolina (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington 53: 156-158.
  • Smith M. R. 1957. Revision of the genus Stenamma Westwood in America north of Mexico (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). American Midland Naturalist 57: 133-174.